|American Libraries Online
A country of hope and promise
Leonard Kniffel writes: “In 2012, the Dominican Republic received $1 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s prestigious Access to Learning Award to fund the country’s chain of Community Technology Centers. These centers provide unprecedented free access to high-tech tools, including training materials and internet access, to reach the poorest of the poor in this nation of more than 10 million, where one out of every three people lives below the poverty line. They also serve as community hubs for cultural events and celebrations.”...
American Libraries feature
Will’s World: Treasure or trash heap?
Will Manley writes: “A couple of years ago I was giving a keynote presentation at a state library conference in the Upper Midwest when a librarian came up to me with a copy of my first book, Snowballs in the Bookdrop, published in 1982. She wanted me to autograph it with a personal greeting, but I hesitated when I saw the library’s property stamp on the front cover. ‘Don’t worry about that,’ she said. ‘This book was weeded at least a decade ago. I grabbed it out of the trash.’ Sure enough, when I opened it up, there was the word ‘discard’ stamped on the title page.”...
American Libraries column, Jan./Feb.
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Alexander McCall Smith to speak at Annual Conference
Attendees at the 2014 ALA Annual Conference will not want to miss the chance to hear the entertaining Alexander McCall Smith (right), author of the acclaimed No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series, when he appears as an Auditorium Speaker on June 28. McCall Smith’s most recent book, a standalone novel titled The Forever Girl, was published in February. Born in what is now Zimbabwe, McCall Smith was educated there and in Scotland, became a law professor, and returned to Africa to work in Botswana....
Conference Services, Feb. 13
Jane Fonda to discuss adolescent empowerment
Author, actress, and activist Jane Fonda (right) will draw on her forthcoming book You, Your Body, Your Life (Random House) when she appears as an Auditorium Speaker at the 2014 ALA Annual Conference in Las Vegas on June 28. Fonda’s focus for nearly 20 years has been on adolescent reproductive health and the empowerment of women and girls. She founded the Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power and Potential in 1994 and Emory University’s Jane Fonda Center for Adolescent Reproductive Health in 2001....
Conference Services, Feb. 18
ALA recognizes Rep. Rush Holt
ALA Washington Office Executive Director Emily Sheketoff writes: “ALA expresses its deepest appreciation for the distinguished work of Representative Rush D. Holt Jr. (D-N.J., right), a leader who has worked tirelessly to support public, academic and school libraries nationwide. On February 18, Rep. Holt announced his retirement from the US House of Representatives, ending 16 years of service.”...
District Dispatch, Feb. 19; Washington Post, Feb. 18
ALA joins WifiForward initiative
Larra Clark writes: “ALA has joined a new coalition calling on policymakers to unleash unlicensed spectrum for Wi-Fi and other uses. WifiForward is an ad hoc group of companies, organizations, and public-sector institutions working to alleviate the Wi-Fi spectrum crunch. The coalition will marshal support to protect and strengthen existing unlicensed spectrum designations and establish transparent and predictable unlicensed rules that encourage growth and deployment.”...
District Dispatch, Feb. 14
“Changing America” traveling exhibition begins
Fifty libraries, museums, and other public sites across the US will host a six-week traveling exhibition, “Changing America: The Emancipation Proclamation, 1863, and the March on Washington, 1963,” between February 2014 and December 2017 to explore the story of liberty and the American experience. All the sites that were selected are receiving a $1,700 grant from ALA, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities, for expenses related to public programs....
Public Information Office, Feb. 18
Survey on ALA awards and grants
ALA is collecting information about awareness of its awards, grants, and scholarships in preparation for a grant application. Please feel free to forward or post a link to this short survey. Both ALA members and nonmembers are welcome to take the survey....
ALA Awards, Grants, and Scholarships
Women of Library History: Call for submissions
In celebration of Women’s History Month in March, the ALA Feminist Task Force invites submissions to its Women of Library History Tumblr site that highlight valued women in libraries. This is the perfect time of year to remember the contributions of these important women in librarianship. Send submissions to Katelyn Browne....
Women of Library History
Download R. David Lankes’s book for free
R. David Lankes, professor at Syracuse University’s iSchool, is making his book Expect More: Demanding Better Libraries For Today’s Complex World available for free downloading by ALA members, trustees, and library Friends. He writes: “In the past two years it has sold thousands of copies and been used both by librarians and those working with libraries. I hope that more librarians can use the book to engage their boards, principals, and provosts in a constructive conversation about the future of their libraries.”...
ALA Executive Office, Feb. 18; Virtual Dave...Real Blog
How to build a great team
If you want a great library, you need a great staff. In the two-part workshop “How to Build a Great Team,” Cathy Hakala-Ausperk—a librarian, speaker, consultant, and expert on library staff development—will show you how you can build an excellent staff and improve efficiency. Whether you’re bringing on new staff members or looking to find new directions with your existing employees, this workshop will give you a practical, step-by-step approach to building a skilled team....
ALA Editions, Feb. 18
A guide to starting and managing a small business
A concise, practical guide to entrepreneurship, Your Small Business Adventure is written by James W. Halloran, a business expert with several decades of success to share. The guide includes real-life examples, case studies, tips from small business owners, and detailed advice from experts. Provocative questions and exercises will help aspiring business owners avoid the most common mistakes and get a leg up on the competition....
Huron Street Press, Feb. 18
Mastering digital librarianship
Edited by Alison Mackenzie and Lindsey Martin, Mastering Digital Librarianship: Strategy, Networking, and Discovery in Academic Libraries, available through the ALA Store, examines the changing roles of the librarian and how working within a rich digital environment has affected the ability of professionals to develop the appropriate know-how, skills, knowledge, and behaviors required to operate effectively. Specialists and opinion makers discuss the challenges and successes of adapting existing practices, introducing new services, and working with new partners....
ALA Neal-Schuman, Feb. 18
Making the most of your library career
Building a library career means knowing how to maximize your potential every step of the way. Benefiting those fresh out of library school as well as experienced professionals, Making the Most of Your Library Career, published by ALA Editions, is filled with valuable insights into launching and managing a library career. Editors Lois Stickell and Bridgette Sanders have gathered career librarians from every corner of the profession to offer a personal view of “what it’s really like out there.”...
ALA Editions, Feb. 18
Providing legal reference
Library staff can combine valuable and ethical legal reference guidance with the practical advice in Legal Reference for Librarians: How and Where to Find the Answers, published by ALA Editions. As both an attorney and a librarian, author Paul D. Healy is uniquely qualified to advise library staff on providing users with the legal information they seek. In this handbook, he offers a concise introduction to legal research, including strategies for finding information quickly and a handpicked compendium of the best resources....
ALA Editions, Feb. 13
Access and identity management for libraries
Written by experts in the field, Access and Identity Management for Libraries: Controlling Access to Online Information, published by Facet Publishing, is the first book to explain the principles behind access management, with coverage of the available technologies and how they work. Authors Masha Garibyan, Simon McLeish, and John Paschoud also include an overview of federated access management technologies....
ALA Neal-Schuman, Feb. 14
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Featured review: Environment
Vallianatos, E. G., and McKay Jenkins. Poison Spring: The Secret History of Pollution and the EPA. Apr. 2014. 304p. Bloomsbury, hardcover (978-1-60819-914-2).
Two outstanding environmental writers team up to tell the excoriating story of catastrophic collusion between the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the chemical industry. Vallianatos worked for the EPA from 1979 to 2004 and witnessed the systematic undermining of the agency’s mission to set standards for environmental and health safety by major chemical manufacturers whose ruthless lobbying strategies were as insidious as the ecologically disastrous pesticides they aggressively promoted and brazenly misused....
Top 10 books on sustainability
Donna Seaman writes: “Curious, rigorous, and thoroughly engaging environmental writers investigate the state of our warming and polluted planet, elucidate the alarming consequences—from mass extinctions to epidemics to water and food concerns—and report on inspired efforts to turn things around.” For example, Alan Weisman’s Countdown: Our Last Best Hope for a Future on Earth, “considers the conundrums of population growth as climate change intensifies in frank conversations with religious leaders, scientists, and public-health experts in more than 20 diverse countries around the world.”...
@ Visit Booklist Online for other reviews and much more....
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Consultants give back at PLA 2014
The ASCLA Library Consultants Interest Group and PLA are teaming up once again to offer “Consultants Give Back” during the PLA 2014 Conference in Indianapolis, March 11–15. This is a unique opportunity for librarians to receive free 30-minute consultation sessions from professional library consultants. Other features of the conference and the host city are detailed in the digital preview issue of PLA’s onsite conference newspaper, the PLA Daily News....
PLA, Feb. 18
Webinar on public libraries and MOOCs
ALCTS is offering a webinar on “MOOCs and the Public Library: An Opportunity” on February 26. Presenter Dorothy Pawlowski will discuss opportunities for public libraries to promote lifelong learning by becoming meet-up destinations for Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). This webinar is based on the experience of the Ridgefield (Conn.) Library, which hosted a 10-week literature-based MOOC. This webinar is the first of the division’s MOOCs Spring Series....
ALCTS, Feb. 13
Spring into learning with AASL
Two of AASL’s self-paced e-Academy online courses, “Design for Understanding Meets the 21st Century School Librarian” and “BYOL: Bring Your Own Lessons into the 21st Century!” begin March 17. Registration is open....
AASL, Feb. 18
TTW: Judge a book by its cover
Justin Azevedo writes: “If you’re still looking for ways to celebrate Teen Tech Week, March 9–15, consider a ‘Judge a Book by Its Cover’ contest, for which teens redesign covers of their favorite books. At my library, we give winners a brand new copy of their book with their remixed cover.”...
YALSA blog, Feb. 16
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2014 Distance Learning Librarianship award
Frederick Stielow (right), dean of libraries, electronic course materials, and APUS ePress at the American Public University System, has been named the 2014 recipient of ACRL’s Routledge Distance Learning Librarianship Conference Sponsorship Award. This annual award, sponsored by Routledge / Taylor & Francis Group, honors an ACRL member contributing to the success of distance learning librarianship or related library services in higher education....
ACRL, Feb. 13
2014 Community College Learning Resources Leadership Award
David M. Rodriguez (right), faculty librarian at the Maricopa County (Ariz.) Community College District and Glendale Community College, has received the EBSCO Community College Learning Resources Leadership Award, administered by the ACRL Community and Junior College Libraries Section. The $500 award, donated by EBSCO Information Services, will be presented to Rodriguez at the ALA Annual Conference in Las Vegas....
ACRL, Feb. 13
2014 Community College Learning Resources Award
Parkland College Library and the Parkland College Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning in Champaign, Illinois, have been selected to receive the EBSCO Community College Learning Resources Award for the project Scholarship at Parkland (SPARK). SPARK was one of the first institutional repositories created at a community college to promote, preserve, and showcase the scholarly and creative work of the college’s students and faculty....
ACRL, Feb. 13
2014 De Gruyter European Study Grant winner
Marta Mestrovic Deyrup (right), librarian for technical services, Italian, Russian, and East European Studies at Seton Hall University, has been selected to receive the 2014 ACRL Western European Studies Section / Slavic and East European Section De Gruyter European Librarianship Study Grant for her project “C’era una Volta: A Guide to Print Materials Published by and about the Italian Minority Communities of Dalmatia and Istria in the 20th and 21st Centuries.”...
ACRL, Feb. 18
2014 Notable Children’s Videos
ALSC has announced its list of 2014 Notable Children’s Videos. The list includes videos for children 14 years of age and younger that exhibit especially commendable quality, show respect for children’s intelligence and imagination, and reflect and encourage the interests of children in exemplary ways....
ALSC, Feb. 18
Conference grant deadlines extended for Academic Friends, trustees
United for Libraries is accepting applications for the United for Libraries / Sage Academic Friend Conference Grant through March 14. The grant enables a person who is active in his or her college or university Friends group, or an academic library staff member who works in development, to attend the ALA Annual Conference. A grant of $850, plus full registration, will be awarded to the recipient. The deadline for the Gale Trustee Conference Grant is also March 14....
United for Libraries, Feb. 14, 18
RBMS preconference scholarships
The Rare Books and Manuscripts Section of ACRL offers scholarships to subsidize first-time preconference attendance by professional librarians, qualified paraprofessionals, and students. This year, the RBMS preconference is “Retrofit: Exploring Space, Place, and the Artifact in Special Collections,” June 24–27 in Las Vegas. The application deadline is March 21....
ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section
Nashville staffer wins national Teacher of the Year award
Liz Atack (right), Bringing Books to Life! program manager at the Nashville (Tenn.) Public Library, was named Toyota Teacher of the Year by the National Center for Families Learning, a nonprofit that supports programs to get adults and children to learn together. Atack is the first library worker chosen in the award’s 17-year history. The Bringing Books to Life! program focuses on preparing early childhood students for kindergarten through parent and family workshops. As part of the award, the library will receive $20,000....
Nashville Tennessean, Feb. 18
20th anniversary of National Medal program
The Institute of Museum and Library Services has announced the 20th anniversary of its National Medal for Museum and Library Service program, the nation’s highest honor conferred on museums and libraries for service to the community. In the last 20 years, IMLS has recognized 132 institutions for their remarkable community programming and resources. To mark this milestone, IMLS is spotlighting previous winning institutions through a special Share Your Story Facebook campaign....
Institute of Museum and Library Services, Feb. 18
Rochester library wins illumination award
The Illuminating Engineering Society has awarded its Harley Hill Excellence in Lighting Award to the city of Rochester, New York, in recognition of the exterior lighting system at the Rundel Memorial Library building of the Central Library of Rochester and Monroe County. The all-LED, energy-efficient system highlights the architectural beauty of this historic building. It also enables the city to enhance the building’s exterior with colored and themed lighting to coincide with holidays and celebrations. Watch the video (2:25)....
City of Rochester, New York, Feb. 12; YouTube, Feb. 13
2013 Cybils Awards
The 2013 Cybils Awards, or the Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Awards, were chosen February 14. Books were nominated by the public in 13 categories of children’s and YA literature. This year’s winner in YA speculative fiction was Alaya Dawn Johnson’s The Summer Prince (Arthur A. Levine), while the winner in the children’s graphic novels category was Barry Deutsch’s Hereville: How Mirka Met a Meteorite (Amulet)....
The Cybils, Feb. 14
2014 Ezra Jack Keats Book Award winners
The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, in partnership with the de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection at the University of Southern Mississippi, has announced the winners of the 2014 Ezra Jack Keats Book Award, which honors new writers and illustrators of children’s books. The winner of the New Writer Award was Ame Dyckman for Tea Party Rules (Viking); and the New Illustrator Award winner was Christian Robinson for Rain! (Houghton Mifflin)....
Ezra Jack Keats Foundation, Feb. 19
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Libraries in the News
Orland Park approves compromise on filters
The Orland Park (Ill.) Public Library will continue to give adults unfiltered internet access, but a policy change also would give librarians discretion if patrons complain. Library trustees unanimously approved changes February 12 to forbid “viewing of material which may be disturbing or offensive to others within viewing distance.” In a 5–2 vote the same night, trustees also agreed to keep adult computers unfiltered....
Chicago Tribune, Feb. 14
Architect team chosen for DCPL renovation
The team of Martinez + Johnson and Mecanoo Architecture has been selected to renovate the District of Columbia Public Library’s Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. Their winning proposal is shown on the right. The library, which was designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, contains many systems that need to be updated or replaced. Additionally, many aspects of library service have changed greatly since the building opened in 1972. Early cost estimates are in the $225–$250 million range. District officials have committed $103 million to the project in the capital budget....
District of Columbia, Feb. 18; Washington Post, Feb. 18
Stabbing incident in Sarasota library
A man was seriously injured February 14 when he was stabbed at the Selby branch of the Sarasota County (Fla.) Public Library. Andrew Timshin and Marcus Colbert were reportedly on the second floor near the computer lab when they began arguing. Witnesses said there was tension between the two men for about an hour, after which Timshin went to retrieve a paper from the printer when he allegedly brandished a knife and stabbed Colbert in the shoulder and neck....
Sarasota (Fla.) Herald-Tribune, Feb. 14
Dial-a-Story in Jersey City
Overworked parents employ many strategies to occupy their kids. The Jersey City (N.J.) Free Public Library has offered an option, for the past nine years, of letting parents and kids call in to hear stories read by city officials—even one former mayor who has passed away—before they go to bed. And the kids are taking them up on it. In 2004, Library Director Priscilla Gardner came up with the idea for Dial-a-Story....
Hoboken (N.J.) Hudson Reporter, Feb. 16
Teens read while they bike—in the school library
Students at Falls Church (Va.) High School could break a sweat while studying. The school recently moved stationary bikes into the library to allow students more time to burn calories while also cramming for tests. Librarian Laura Potocki helped acquire a grant to pay for four recumbent exercise bikes and placed them in a corner of the room dedicated to fitness, health, and well-being, complete with motivational posters on the walls....
Washington Post, Feb. 4; Fairfax County (Va.) Public Schools, Feb. 3
Another military library closes
Dover Air Force Base in Delaware is closing its library on February 28. The library serves airmen, their families, and other base personnel. Lt. Col. Matt Orlowsky, commander of the base’s force support squadron, said that airmen would use the Dover and Kent County public libraries. Some of the base library’s resources, like children’s books and education materials, will remain at the base and move to other locations....
WBOC-TV, Salisbury, Md., Feb. 17
James Madison’s library is refurnished
The writings that inspired President James Madison have come home to Montpelier after 160 years. The curatorial team at Madison’s estate in Orange County, Virginia, identified about 1,800 titles from his collection of more than 4,000 volumes, most of which were lost in the Rotunda fire at the University of Virginia in 1895. Period copies of the books now fill the library at Montpelier, a task that took the team about a year to complete. The library was modeled as it would have looked during Madison’s retirement years in 1817–1836....
Fredericksburg (Va.) Free Lance-Star, Feb. 17; Montpelier, Feb. 17
Beinecke Library acquires rare English bibles
Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library has acquired two “Tyndale Bibles,” the first printed English translations of biblical texts, which are among the rarest and most influential works in the English language. The acquisition consists of two volumes: William Tyndale’s translation of the Pentateuch published in 1534, and his translation of the New Testament published in 1536. Fewer than a dozen of each is known to exist worldwide; there are only two copies of Tyndale’s Pentateuch on record in North America....
Beinecke Library, Feb. 4
Music collection a challenge for UT Austin
Thanks to its purchase of the entire physical library of public radio station KUT-FM, the University of Texas at Austin’s Fine Arts Library has 60,000 CDs and 4,000 LPs to process and store. Acquiring the KUT collection cost only $3,000, but processing and storing it will cost far more. The library will need money to hire additional catalogers and student assistants. Music Curator David C. Hunter said he will need 56 new CD cabinets; each costs about $800, so the total figure will come to around $44,800....
Chronicle of Higher Education: Wired Campus, Feb. 14, 17
Hungarian rabbi locates 103 looted scrolls in Russian library
A Hungarian rabbi said on February 18 that he had uncovered 103 Torah scrolls stolen from Hungarian Jews during World War II and stashed in a Russian library, adding he planned to restore and return them to the Jewish community. Slomo Koves (right), chief rabbi of the Unified Hungarian Jewish Congregation, said he had found the scrolls in 2013 while following up a previous recovery of Hungarian war loot in the Lenin Scientific Library in Nizhny Novgorod. Koves said he had no doubt the Torah scrolls had belonged to Hungarian Jews....
Reuters, Feb. 18
Preserving manuscripts in the al-Aqsa Mosque library
In the 1920s, an urgent call went out to the literati across the Middle East from Arab leaders in Jerusalem: Send us your books so that we may protect them for generations to come. Jerusalem was soon flushed with writings of all kinds, to be stored and preserved at the newly minted al-Aqsa mosque library. But many of those centuries-old manuscripts are in a state of decay. Now, religious authorities are restoring and digitizing the books, many of them written by hand....
Associated Press, Jan. 31
Tibetan texts find a home in China
Andrew Jacobs writes: “Decades ago, the thousands of Tibetan-language books now ensconced in the Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center at Southwest University for Nationalities in Chengdu in southwest China might have ended up in a raging bonfire. But an American scholar, E. Gene Smith, galvanized in part by the rampages of the Cultural Revolution, embarked on a mission to collect and preserve the remnants of Tibetan culture.” Watch the video (1:51)....
New York Times, Feb. 16
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FCC to rewrite net neutrality rules
The Federal Communications Commission said February 19 it will rewrite sweeping broadband internet rules known as net neutrality, ending a legal battle that has thrown into question the agency’s ability to protect consumers on the web. The FCC said new rules will ban internet service providers such as Verizon and Time Warner Cable from blocking websites or charging a firm like Netflix more for faster and smoother delivery of content....
Washington Post, Feb. 19
Schools must give kids internet guidance
Abigail Walthausen writes: “As schools begin to plan for the benefits of improved connectivity, it is important to consider giving students guidance in becoming productive citizens of the web. New curricula must acknowledge the many-headed hydra that is social media. Integration of conscious social media use, as well as policies that provide more free and unfiltered internet access, are two ways of modeling best practices and actively teaching internet skills within schools.”...
The Atlantic, Feb. 14
10 essential elements of digital content for young learners
Laura Devaney writes: “Digital content for young children has a number of characteristics that keep them engaged and motivate them to learn, said Mark Schlichting, a veteran children’s interactive content designer and creator of Broderbund’s Living Books series, during an edWeb webinar. ‘There’s no real difference between real play and digital play,’ Schlichting said. ‘Play is play, except that digital play is really good at delivering immediate feedback.’”...
eSchool News, Feb. 14
Resource selection and the Common Core
Margaux DelGuidice and Rose Luna write: “Are the Common Core standards really driving new materials purchases, and if so, how? We wanted to find out, so we distributed a survey on collection development and the Common Core to school librarians across the country via the popular discussion list LM_NET and Twitter. Early results show that school librarians are not swayed in their purchasing by a ‘Common Core Aligned’ label slapped onto a book or splashed across a digital resource.”...
Publishers Weekly, Feb. 14
IFLA at the United Nations
The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions is actively involved at the United Nations in sessions dedicated to the creation of Sustainable Development Goals. The UN Open Working Group has been holding a series of sessions focusing on issues that need to be represented in a new development framework scheduled to begin in January 2016. ALA Councilor and IFLA Governing Board Member Loida Garcia-Febo (seated on the left) gave a presentation on “Closing the Information Gap in the Post-2015 Framework: Libraries As Champions for the Data Revolution” (PDF file) at the UN Development Program meeting in late January....
International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions, Feb. 12
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Printing your ideas into 3D reality
With the push of a button—plus a lot of design work and hours of waiting—the emerging technology of 3D printing can produce food, plastic phone accessories, even human tissue. Science correspondent Miles O’Brien explores how businesses and schools are creating everything from speakers to ballet shoes, as well as serious challenges and risks presented by ever-widening printing possibilities. Watch the video (8:26)....
PBS NewsHour, Feb. 12
Simson Garfinkel writes: “Google Glass is an always-ready smart device that answers your questions, alerts you to messages, and gives you driving directions. The see-through display is just out of your direct line of sight. When you choose to consult the display, it looks like a smartphone screen held eight inches from your face. But when you are doing something else, Glass is easy to ignore. Google’s challenge in making the device a successful consumer product will be convincing the people around you to ignore it as well.”...
MIT Technology Review, Feb. 17
Finger ring scans and narrates text
Jordan Kushins writes: “This FingerReader by the Fluid Interfaces Group at the MIT Media Lab is a high-tech way to help visually impaired people read. As a fingertip follows along in a book or Kindle, a camera in the oversized ring records and analyzes the words, which are then said in a Stephen Hawking–like voice. Haptic clues (vibrations) are given to the user when she nears the end of a line and to note where a new one begins, as well as whenever she begins to drift off track.” Watch the video (2:15)....
Gizmodo, Feb. 19; Vimeo, Feb. 18
A list of favorites from a man who knows his apps
Nick Bilton writes: “Some people have a friend that can recommend the hottest new music album or latest and greatest upcoming television show. My friend Michael Galpert is my go-to person for the most obscure and often most useful apps that would otherwise be lost to me amid the million-plus options in the App Store. I asked him to share with readers some of the latest apps he’s using.”...
New York Times: Bits, Feb. 15
How to get hacked in five exciting steps (satire)
David Pogue writes: “Most people don’t want their password stolen by some anonymous Eastern European teenager. They would not like discovering that they can’t get into their own email, Twitter, or Facebook accounts. But come on, people. What’s life without a little risk? For those who seek the exhilaration of living dangerously, here it is at last: the first concise, authoritative guide to making yourself vulnerable online.”...
Yahoo! Tech, Feb. 18
Wireless charging: Still plenty of kinks in the cord
Molly Wood writes: “As personal devices proliferate—smartphones, wearable fitness bands, Kindles, tablets, smart glasses—our charger collections are starting to look like the electrical outlet in A Christmas Story. Wireless charging to the rescue? Not quite. The concept has been caught in a slow-moving standards war. Until last week, there were three separate groups pushing wireless charging standards.”...
New York Times: Bits, Feb. 17
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Top 10 reasons for choosing a paper book over an ebook
Nate Hoffelder writes: “A cursory glance at the statistics for the US ebook market will tell you most people are sticking with paper, and there’s a good reason for that. As this infographic will show you, paper books fill many uses that ebooks cannot. The infographic is based on a poll conducted recently by Fatbrain, a UK-based used book marketplace. More than 1,000 Fatbrain users responded, and they revealed that the most popular reason for staying with paper reflected their emotional attachment.”...
The Digital Reader, Feb. 18
Who do you trust?
James LaRue writes: “The Connecticut library community has engaged its legislators in the ebook-availability debate. Its report on Special Act 13-10 is the result. It’s a thoughtful report, even-handed and reasonably comprehensive. It would be, in fact, a great insert in the nation’s library board packets this month. As the report states, the environment of e-publishing and libraries is still in flux.”...
AL: E-Content, Feb. 19
Take screenshots on almost any Kindle device
Walter Glenn writes: “You might want to share a picture of a book you’re reading or snap a shot of a settings page so you can help a friend with his device. Whatever your reason, you can take screenshots on most Kindle devices. Here’s how to do it. This video (1:49) from ebook site Good E-Reader shows you how to take a screenshot on the Kindle Paperwhite.”...
Lifehacker, Feb. 14; Good E-Reader, Jan. 24
Follett announces ebook partnership with Penguin
Follett announced February 18 it has launched a collection of nearly 17,000 ebook titles for PreK–12 students from Penguin Group (USA). Penguin is the fifth major book publisher to partner with Follett in the past six months, joining Random House, Hachette, Simon & Schuster, and Macmillan....
Follett, Feb. 18
Capturing the Olympic spirit through web archiving
Susan Manus writes: “Every two years there is a fresh opportunity for excitement in following the Olympic games. And now there is an effort going on behind the scenes to capture the highlights, the competition, and the general cultural history surrounding the Olympic Games. That is, a project to archive the 2014 Olympics websites. This effort may not be well known, but the resultant archive will be invaluable for researchers in the future.”...
The Signal: Digital Preservation, Feb. 12
Can online music services ever succeed?
Lucas Mearian writes: “Subscriptions to music services are expected to more than double by 2017, but because those services pay 60%–70% of their revenue to record labels and artists, the entire sector is intrinsically unprofitable, according to a recent report by Generator Research. Unless the services can monetize their user base by entering new product and service categories, or they can sell themselves to a larger company that can sustain them, they’re doomed to fail.”...
PC World, Feb. 15
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2014 Annual Conference and Exhibition, Las Vegas, June 26–July 1. There are less than two weeks left to get the best registration rates: Early Bird ends March 3. If you need them, don’t forget the “Making your case to attend” resources.
The 10th Kingdom (March 19, 2000, miniseries, UK / Germany / US), “Episode #1.8.” Mike Edmonds plays a dwarf librarian.
That Darn Cat (1997). Christina Ricci as Patti Randall uses a library computer to look up information about a kidnapped maid.
That Kind of Girl (1963, UK). Frank Jarvis as Max and Charles Houston as Ted work in a library.
That ’70s Show (November 19, 2003, TV series), “The Acid Queen.” Shannon Elizabeth as public library worker Brooke Leslie Rockwell gets pregnant by Ashton Kutcher as recent high school grad Michael Kelso.
This AL Direct feature describes hundreds of films (and some TV shows) in which libraries and librarians are featured, from 1912 to the present. The full list is a Web Extra associated with The Whole Library Handbook 5, edited by George M. Eberhart and published by ALA Editions. You can browse the films on our Libraries on Film Pinterest board.
Teen Services / Digital Creativity Manager, Monroe County Public Library, Bloomington, Indiana. Do you have a passion for engaging teens in a technology-rich learning environment? Are you searching for a creative environment that values collaboration, partnerships, and service? The Teen Services and Digital Creativity Manager will provide librarywide leadership for the Library’s comprehensive new Teen Services and Digital Creativity department. The successful candidate has the ability to inspire imaginations and create a gathering place for teens to explore, question, and express themselves in a fun and relaxed atmosphere. Desired personal attributes include a sense of humor, a passion for engaging teens, and a positive and enthusiastic approach to nurturing and enhancing digital skills in others....
Digital Library of the Week
The French Revolution Digital Archive is a multiyear collaboration of Stanford University Libraries and the Bibliothèque nationale de France to produce a digital version of the key research sources of the French Revolution and make them available to the international scholarly community. The archive is based on two main resources, the Archives parlementaires (a chronologically-ordered collection of documentary sources) and some 14,000 images first brought together in 1989 and known as the Images de la Revolution française. Scholars are able to search each collection separately using an English or French interface, and across both collections.
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Noted and Quoted
”Most librarians are inclined to make a book something sacred. But we ought to recognize and employ it as a tool to be used not a fetish to be worshipped.... Perhaps the library of fifty years from now will have outgrown the present book and relegated it to the museum with the older inscriptions on clay.... Our great function is to inform or to inspire, or to please; to give to the public in the quickest and cheapest way information, inspiration, and recreation on the highest plane. If a better way than the books is found we should use it.”
—“Our Next Half-Century,” address by Melvil Dewey at the 1926 ALA Annual Conference in Atlantic City and Philadelphia, Bulletin of the American Library Association 20 (1926): 311–312.
“For market fundamentalists, it can be hard to relate to libraries and library values. Free books and internet, universal access, nonprofit, publicly funded, literacy, educational, and cultural programming and sharing are not the most profitable activities. While one can easily make the argument libraries help the market economy by promoting literacy, culture, and creativity among the general population, I think what the library offers to society speaks for itself. One cannot quantify the economic spinoffs of a vibrant cultural center.”
—Jacob Kearey-Moreland, in guest editorial, “Library the Latest Target of the Right,” Orillia (Ont.) Packet and Times, Feb. 14.
University of Toronto Faculty of Information, online MOOC on
“Library Advocacy Unshushed: Values, Evidence, Action.” Register by February 24.
Library Publishing Coalition, Library Publishing Forum, Intercontinental Hotel, Kansas City, Missouri.
First International Science 2.0 Conference, Empire Riverside Hotel, Hamburg, Germany.
Concordia University Libraries, 12th Annual Research Forum, Loyola Jesuit Hall and Conference Centre, Montreal.
Bibliographical Society of America, “Bibliography, Collections, and the History of Science,” Pyle Center, University of Wisconsin–Madison.
Rural Libraries Conference, Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island, Michigan.
The City University of New York Office of Library Services, Reinventing Libraries: Reinventing Assessment Conference, Baruch College, New York City. “Innovative Practices and Ideas that Challenge the Status Quo.”
Library of Congress, Civil Rights Institute, Washington, D.C.
IFLA Information Literacy Section Satellite Meeting Program, Limerick Institute of Technology, Ireland. “Facing the Future: Librarians and Information Literacy in a Changing Landscape.”
Association for Rural and Small Libraries, Annual Conference, Tacoma, Washington.
Northwest Interlibrary Loan and Resource Sharing Conference, Portland Community College, Sylvania Campus, Oregon.
International Congress on Management of Cultural Heritage and Cultural Memory Institutions, Istanbul University, Turkey.
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Huckleberry Finn: 129 years of rabble rousing
Betsy Gomez writes: “Since its first American publication on February 18, 1885, Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has been the subject of praise and controversy. The novel was among the first to be written in vernacular English common to the antebellum South, language that contributed to its long history of being challenged, censored, and banned from classrooms and libraries. In fact, Huck Finn remains one of the most banned books of all time, having been considered ‘too vulgar,’ ‘racist,’ and ‘socially offensive.’”...
Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, Feb. 18
What YA lit would George Washington read?
Sharon Rawlins writes: “George Washington was a man of integrity who avoided scandal. So it might surprise you to know that he was a spymaster during the Revolutionary War. In honor of Presidents’ Day, I thought I would highlight some YA books that I think George would have really enjoyed reading.”...
YALSA The Hub, Feb. 17
WWAR? (What would Abe read?)
Geri Diorio writes: “According to David Herbert Donald’s 1996 biography Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln read and reread such books as the Bible, Aesop’s Fables, Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan, Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe, and Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography. Taking a leap of imagination, and asking the spirit of President Lincoln for forgiveness for my temerity, I would like to suggest half a dozen YA books that the 16th president might very much enjoy today.”...
YALSA The Hub, Feb. 17
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Academic Libraries, 2012
The National Center for Education Statistics has released its 2012 summary of academic library statistics (PDF file). Some sample findings include: academic libraries loaned 10.5 million documents in FY 2012 and borrowed 9.8 million documents; academic libraries added 52.7 million ebooks, resulting in total ebook holdings of 252.6 million units; and academic libraries spent about $3.4 billion on salaries and wages, representing 49% of total library expenditures....
US National Center for Education Statistics, Feb. 13
America’s most literate cities, 2013
Drawing from a variety of available data resources, the America’s Most Literate Cities study ranks the largest cities (population 250,000 and above) in the United States. This Central Connecticut State University study focuses on six key indicators of literacy: number of bookstores, educational attainment, internet resources, library resources, periodical publishing resources, and newspaper circulation....
Central Connecticut State University
Next Chapter Book Club a hit at Loudoun County
The first semimonthly meeting of the Next Chapter Book Club at the Loudoun County (Va.) Public Library was a big hit on February 17, according to Programming Librarian Linda Holtslander. The book club, uniquely geared towards adults with intellectual and cognitive disabilities, is a nationwide program, with a style of facilitating each meeting that empowers and encourages people of all abilities to make friends, read, and discuss stories together, and be in a community setting....
Leesburg (Va.) Today, Feb. 1
Seven excellent websites for academic librarians
R. C. Miessler writes: “Whether you are currently employed by an academic library or are looking for a career in one, keeping up to date on the fun, exciting, and soul-crushing world of higher education is of vital import. Here are just a few sites that I check regularly to stay informed and connect with others in the academy.”...
INALJ, Feb. 13
Summer reading programs boost student achievement
Lauren Barack writes: “The results of a pilot study of Missouri’s Mid-Continent Public Library suggest that summer reading programs actually raise student reading levels in time for their return to school in the fall—particularly among at-risk kids. MCPL partnered with the Kansas City Area Education Research Consortium to gather assessment data from students in three school districts in the spring of 2012 and again the following fall.”...
School Library Journal, Feb. 12
Library Lovers Day in Australia
An article in Marketing Library Services written by Victoria Anderson, a consultant in the Public Library Services branch of the State Library of New South Wales, documents the history of Library Lovers Day (February 14) in Australia. In 2003, the library successfully applied for grant funding to roll out the @ your library public awareness campaign developed by ALA. By 2007, the campaign went national under the umbrella of the Australian Library and Information Association and Public Libraries Australia....
Campaign for America’s Libraries, Feb. 18; Marketing Library Services, Sept./Oct. 2011
Sensitivity in outreach
Lizz Zitron writes: “Not everyone is being raised by a mother and father. Some kids we work with are being raised by grandparents, aunts and uncles, older siblings, two moms, two dads, one dad, two dads and a mom, or foster parents. Some kids come to programs with social workers, nurse caregivers, Girl Scout leaders, or teachers, among others. Luckily there is a simple way to address this, no matter where you stand on issues or your community.”...
The Outreach Librarian, Feb. 12
Use addictive games to build better brains
Nick Bilton writes: “So many of the games that we download on our smartphones are a waste of time, but we can’t seem to stop playing them. Why do we keep falling for these things? The answer to that question just might be found in a medical laboratory at the University of California, San Francisco. Researchers there are trying to figure out how we might use video games to make our minds stronger, faster, and healthier.”...
New York Times: Bits, Feb. 16
Compassion spoken here
Aidy So writes: “What can we do as library professionals to express our compassion for those who speak English as their second language? Learning a foreign language or sign language helps to create a welcoming environment. Welcoming environments create repeat library users who bring others to the library with them, like members of their family.”...
Hack Library School, Feb. 17
Tips for printing and hanging photos
Jill Duffy writes: “If you have a color printer, chances are it’s fully equipped for printing photos that will be of high enough quality that you’ll be able to hang them on your walls without embarrassment. Use glossy photo paper, and you should be all set. Graphic illustrations, however, are another story. Be sure to adjust your printer’s settings for not only the paper size, but also its weight.” Watch the video (1:36). Would you like to make your printed photo look like a watercolor? There’s an app for that....
PC Magazine, Feb. 17; YouTube, Feb. 17; Slate: The Eye, Feb. 17
The Library of Congress in the Capitol
Robert Pohl writes: “When the Capitol was moved to the District of Columbia, there was one resource that was of absolute paramount importance: a library. While previous cities that had hosted the government had long-established options for research, the new city was not so endowed. When the Capitol was completed with the finishing of its dome, the library was housed in a large, three-tiered room running along the west front of the Capitol, right next to the Rotunda. Members of Congress appreciated its proximity.”...
The Hill Is Home, Feb. 17
Enviable bookmobile fashions
Derek Attig writes: “I’ve spent the past seven years researching bookmobiles. I’ve learned a lot in the process—facts, figures, stories, interpretations—but one thing that always stands out is this: Many people who visit bookmobiles dress with some serious pizzazz. It’s not universally true, of course; bookmobiles attract ordinary clothes as much as amazing ones. But looking through some of the photos I’ve collected, there’s no denying that bookmobiles brought out the best (and sometimes weirdest) in people.”...
Book Riot, Feb. 18
Agloe, the paper town stranger than fiction
Frank Jacobs writes: “Truth is stranger than fiction. Especially if that truth is caused by fiction. Consider the strange case of Agloe, a place name that started appearing on maps of New York State in the 1930s. But Agloe was a deliberate fake, scrambled from the initials of Otto G. Lindberg, director of the General Drafting Company, and his assistant Ernest Alpers. The company was putting together a road map of New York State, and wanted to make sure that all its hard work wouldn’t just be copied.”...
Big Think: Strange Maps, Feb. 11
Experience how big the universe is
Lucky Tran writes: “Most of us have trouble visualizing the height of buildings or the distance it takes to get home from work, let alone things on an intergalactic scale. This interactive graphic, made in 2012 by 14-year-old Cary Huang, could be the best tool to help us understand our vast universe. The piece allows the viewer to zoom through scale and space, from quarks to galactic clusters. Its real genius is the ability to scroll back to a familiar object like a car—the time spent scrolling helps to convey a sense of size and distance.”...
PolicyMic, Feb. 11
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